They may not look like much now but in a few months their yellow flowers will herald the arrival of spring
Even though it’s almost Thanksgiving, it’s not too late here in southwestern Connecticut (zone 6) to plant spring-flowering bulbs. Because the weather has been seasonable and the ground is not frozen, this is a great time to plant. I ordered 200 daffodil bulbs from Colorblends about a month ago and as you can see from the photo, that’s a lot of bulbs to plant. I am planting my daffodil bulbs in front of a low stone wall that runs the length of my property, about 150 feet. I already have some daylilies planted there for summer color so I needed to be careful not to disturb them when planting the bulbs.
A bulb auger makes planting lots of bulbs easy
While there are several good methods to use when planting a large quantity of bulbs, the easiest way that I know of is to get your kids to do it! Seriously, bulbs augers make quick work of planting a large number of big bulbs, like daffodils or tulips. If you’re planting in large clumps, it’s probably easier to use a shovel to excavate to the correct depth, but for a job like mine – planting in front of a wall – the bulb auger is ideal. And, as you can see from the photo, using an auger attached to a power drill is the perfect chore for a teenager who hates to help out in the garden! He dug the holes and I followed behind and dropped in the bulbs and filled in the soil. We planted all the bulbs in about an hour. And I’ll be enjoying them for years and years and years.
For more information about planting spring-flowering bulbs, check out these links:
It snowed already here in Connecticut!
On October 15th it snowed here in Stamford, CT (zone 6). OK, it didn’t look quite like this photo but it definitely snowed. While it’s early for snow here, it made me realize the end of the growing season is right around the corner.
The growing season is bookmarked by two very important dates - the last frost date and the first frost date. The problem with these dates is they can vary widely from year to year. Here in coastal Connecticut, the CT DEP says the average first frost date is October 19th. But other sources put our first frost date as early as October 2nd.
In addition to signaling the end of the typical growing season, the first frost also signals the start of the spring-bulb planting season. Most bulbs like to be planted in soil that is about 55 degrees. Bulbs need cool soil to set roots before the winter arrives. Once you get your first frost, you have about eight weeks after the first frost to get our spring-flowering bulbs in the ground. So here in Stamford, CT, we have until about mid-December to plant spring-flowering bulbs.
So while the first frost can be a little bittersweet, it really is a harbinger of the winter lull in my garden but also the first indication that spring really is just around the corner. And with spring comes the anticipation of another growing season.